Three games on tap for Saturday as State buses over to Winston-Salem for a renewal of the old rivalry with Wake Forest, UNC visits Florida State and Virginia Tech heads up to Beantown to take on the Eagles.
UNC should be significantly favored against Florida State, but the 'Noles have been a bit schizophrenic this season, and they are capable of a very, very high level defensive performance.Â Who shows up? If the high-test version shows up, things could get interesting.Â The problem is they have to defend Kendall Marshall, Harrison Barnes and the big guys.Â That's a lot. They won't have Leslie McDonald anytime soon, incidentally: he'll be redshirting.
In Miam's favor: UNC hasn't really played anyone of consequence since Kentucky on December 3rd, and while Florida State crowds generally suck by ACC standards, they do get fired up for 15-501 visitors.Â If they stay close, it puts a higher level of game pressure on UNC than they've seen in a while.
By the way, this guy is not happy with UNC's fans and suggests that they might be acting like "the boorish fans of a school up the road."Â So what's his beef with State?
After the letdown against Georgia Tech, Wake shouldn't count on State giving them much: if they pull off an upset it'll be because they play up, not that State plays down.Â This could get a bit ugly, actually.
You would have to think that after showing some spunk in the Dean Dome, then knocking off Clemson, the Eaglets should be gaining some confidence. They're much better than they were earlier in the year. Virginia Tech is battle-tested though they've struggled some lately. Seth Greenberg says he ratcheted things down in practice because he has such a young team but no more: the gloves are off.
Of note: Greenberg's record at BC is 1-9.
So we'll take UNC, State, and Tech. BC might play well, but they're just as likely to take a step back and Tech is probably worked up over their losses to Wake and Florida State.
In College Park, Maryland is dealing with a serious revenue shortage, and basketball, the lead sled dog, has to pull more than anyone else.Â So they're looking at various things, like making Comcast Center a place to have concerts (it'll take some work) scaling the house to make courtside tickets more expensive, and even a home-and-home with Georgetown.
And last but not least, upgrading the rest of the non-conference home schedule.
That shouldn't be too hard: this year they brought in UNC-W, Florida Gulf Coast, Illinois (mandated by the ACC-Big Ten Challenge), Notre Dame in D.C., Mount St. Mary's, FIU, Radford, Albany, Samford and Cornell.
Realistically, what's that worth to anyone? Now if they had, say, Georgetown, Xavier, Missouri, Michigan State, Alabama or Gonzaga - you know, you put together something like that, people will get excited.Â Call it the anti-Sendek principle: no more McNeese States in the sausage grinder.
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